Joyce Roy 
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Recent Comments

Re: “Oakland Bus Stop Battle Continues, Outcome Unclear

I am glad that at the meeting, a spokesman from Sprouts made it clear that they are ready to honor their Condition of Approval to "move the southbound Route 51A bus stop from just north of 30th Street to just south of 30th Street, and provide a bulbous at the bus stop and amenities such as a shelter and bench." Sprouts are the good guy.
What is particularly disturbing is that Mayor Libby Schaaf and Rachel Flynn, Head of Planning , have apparently bought into Oakland as a dangerous place.

Posted by Joyce Roy on 04/18/2016 at 4:08 PM

Re: “Town Business: Housing Emergency; Biff's Demolition; “Love Life”; Pop Tax

Oakland City Council on Tuesday will consider a proposed massive project of overwhelming scale with mish-mash design at a major site, 27th Street and Broadway. Both the Landmarks Board and the Planning Commission were troubled by its design.

To allow the developer, Hanover Co., to cover every inch of the property with seven stories of 255 units, the city is violating its Planning Code and the Preservation Element of the General Plan by permitting the demolition of a historic resource, Biff's Coffee Shop, on the back half of the site.

Demolition of a historic resource is only allowed if it "cannot generate a reasonable economic return" and its replacement "is equal/superior to that of the original structure."

Biff's -- as a restored, operating 24/7 family-friendly restaurant -- is of greater value to Oakland than more unaffordable, family-unfriendly apartments. A qualified operator has offered to lease it for $20,000 per month and it would cost less to restore it than constructing four units.

The City Council meeting starts at 6:30 p.m.

Posted by Joyce Roy on 04/04/2016 at 10:42 PM

Re: “Goodbye, Express Readers

Your very well researched two issue expose of AC Transit's Buses from Hell was a great example of investigative reporting. Too bad the lover of the buses, Chris Peeples on the board, just dismissed it as "yellow journalism." If that was "yellow journalism," I hope you get a chance to do some more. We need it!

Posted by Joyce Roy on 03/29/2016 at 7:02 PM

Re: “Big Oil Brown Strikes Again

Maybe this explains why California is the only oil producing state that doesn't have an oil depletion tax. Even in the lowest point when we had to cut funds from the neediest, he would not consider such a tax.

Posted by Joyce Roy on 11/17/2015 at 6:31 PM

Re: “Oakland Downtown Plan Draws Skepticism

I was also at the meeting at the Paramount and have two main concerns that I think are not being addressed.

First, the lack of public input into uses of public land, for instance, the Strada project at 11th and Clay with 262 market-rate apartments—where are the affordable units? And when it comes to creating public open space, you will hear, “We don’t have the money to buy the land.” Okay, so use the public land you have. A perfect location for active uses is the city-owned parking lot at 19th & San Pablo next to affordable housing and also down the block from the School for the Arts. Now for exercise, they have to go to Snow Park to play Frisbee. Will the public have a say?

And, it should be obvious that the developer for Parcel 4 at Telegraph & 19th must have a significant plaza on Telegraph for passive uses like dining or just sitting and admiring the Fox Theater and the Floral Depot. Will the public have a say?

Second, a Specific Plan, as we are finding out with the Broadway/Valdez Specific Plan, can enable the fast tracking of the demolition of historic resources. See this Tribune article:…
BTW in the article, plan B is not doable, only the restoration of Biff’s is viable.

Unfortunately, it seems that Oakland’s welcome mat to developers still says, “Tramp on Me.”

Posted by Joyce Roy on 10/30/2015 at 7:25 PM

Re: “Oakland Favors Bank Over Bus Riders

Hawthorne is the stop to the north before 30th, only one block away. But, what a block! It's two blocks long!

Posted by Joyce Roy on 10/03/2015 at 6:00 PM

Re: “Building Downtown Oakland for Cars

Interesting that the city is beginning a Downtown Oakland Specific Plan process this evening and they are considering a monster proposal like this one. Is this going to be a case of closing the barn door after the horse has escaped? And like the 12th St. proposal, this one is on public land. When does the public get their say? Only when they riot at a council meeting?

And besides it looks like it was designed by five architects that hid their drawings from each other.

The Oakland Plan actually has the Open Space, Conservation and Recreation Element (OSCAR), which it ignores. It did so in the Broadway/Valdez Specific Plan and may in this, too. The excuse is that “we don’t have funds to purchase open space.” True, but the city owns this! The OSCAR element proposes “a local-serving park acreage standard of 4 acres per 1,000 residents.” The current uptown open space does not come close to that.

The best use for this public site would be for an active recreational field. It is needed for the kids next door, the Oakland School for the Arts, and kids of all ages. It would be a major attraction for millennials.

Posted by Joyce Roy on 09/03/2015 at 4:54 PM

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